LeBron James spoke to the media on Friday night for the first time since announcing he would return to Cleveland. With the arrival of Kevin Love and the potential additions of Shawn Marion and Ray Allen to a roster that already includes the best player on the planet and a budding superstar in Kyrie Irving, the Cavaliers are undoubtedly a title contender in 2014/15. But should they be the favorites?
The Las Vegas oddsmakers say yes, and many of them were firmly in that position long before the addition of Love. However, there are plenty of external variables that go into creating those odds, some of which have nothing to do with what happens on the court. So what about from a basketball standpoint? Remember, it took LeBron’s first super squad two seasons to capture a title and that team, with an in-his-prime version of Dwyane Wade, probably had a bit more star power than this group. After all, neither Love nor Irving have played in a playoff game at this point in their careers.
Speaking of LeBron’s former Miami team, they were just dismantled by a Spurs group that looked unbeatable and remains largely intact. When it comes to things like oddsmaking and public perception, small market San Antonio has never been a sexy selection nationally. While few would doubt their potential to repeat, the idea that they aren’t hands down favorites for next season’s title suggests that their triumph in June didn’t have the impact that it should have.
With the injury to Paul George and the always-uncertain status of Derrick Rose, the Cavs might just have a clear path through the Eastern Conference. But as we saw a few months ago, that might not mean much against the loaded West. So what do you think? Does Love rightfully make the Cavs the NBA favorite in 2014/15 or should the Spurs still be the pick? Or is it someone else? Please let us know the reasoning behind your vote in the comments section.